Art’s are key to Oklahoma City’s growing national recognition

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. — Ten years ago, people may not have compared Oklahoma City to destinations like San Diego, Austin or Nashville. That’s changed, The Oklahoman reports. Oklahoma City is ranked as a top place to visit in 2016 by USA Today.

Entrepreneur Magazine ranked Oklahoma City as the No. 1 city to move to if you want to launch a business. This month,

Gizmodo said Oklahoma City is one of three American cities offering good jobs, affordable housing and a high quality of life.

If you look across the world at cities widely known for their high quality of life, you will invariably find communities that support and embrace the arts in all its forms. Our community’s support of the arts has played an integral role in Oklahoma City’s renaissance.

To keep this momentum going, we rely on local nonprofits to help us create the type of community in which we want to live and work. We all know that this year has been filled with its fair share of challenges. A cautious economic climate has created a difficult setting for fundraising across the board. Coupled with severe funding cuts from several sources, the health of our arts scene is threatened in a way that we haven’t seen in years.

Allied Arts is one of those nonprofits. During its 45-year history, it has generated more than $60 million in support of more than 60 leading arts organizations. Yet this year, Allied Arts agencies will receive an estimated $1.2 million decrease in funding from Allied Arts and the Oklahoma Arts Council. These cuts not only halt the progress we have seen in our cultural community, but are giant steps backward in the levels of support that have taken years to build.

READ MORE of this story from The Oklahoman by Mick Cornett.

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